Monday, November 22, 2010

A Child's Best Interest

This has been a difficult school year. We thought we knew where everybody stood when it came to Benji's needs and his education. We may not have agreed with where they stood but we thought we knew where they stood.
Over the weekend, I waited until Sunday afternoon to go through Benji's backpack from school. In an odd sense, I am glad I did.  Benji's mid nine weeks progress report was in his folder.There were three things on the report that he did not know.
  1. Character and Plot in a story
  2. The difference in fantasy and reality
  3. Counting to 50
The first I believe was just recently introduced so it is understandable as to why he has not mastered it yet. The second is a very difficult thing for a child that is VERY literal to grasp. The third would not have bothered me because he was only up to 29 on the report card, except that next to it was marked he could only count to 13. 

Many parents would think, well he just had a bad day, except 1) he has been counting to 20 for over a year if I remember correctly and 2) I was just told this past Thursday that he was doing excellent.

I took the copy I made of his report card and a copy of the progress report to the school and spoke to the assistant principal about the situation. (He was in the meeting and heard the same wonderful news I had.) There were statements such as: kids aren't really consistent at that age, maybe it was a clerical error. There was the question of what I wanted them to do, also. This response infuriates me.

1) the OT sensory and hand writing... because Benji is no worse than the rest of the class he is in, he's okay. It doesn't matter that he has regressed.

2) on the report card it claims he has "mastered" a skill that 4 weeks later he can't do and it's "normal"

And how is this in the best interest of my child? How is it in the best interest of my child to be compared to students that have not had the same opportunities as him? How is it in the best interest of my child to say it's "okay" to regress? How is it in the best interest of my child to not care if he is actually doing well academically?

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